Charif Souki takes Tellurian LNG company public

Cheniere Energy founder Chair Souki has successfully taken his new company public on Nasdaq with the stock ticker “TELL” for Houston-based Tellurian Inc.

Souki was ousted from liquefied natural gas export pioneer Cheniere just more than a year ago and he founded Tellurian as a new LNG competitor. Tellurian went public through a reverse merger completed Friday with the now defunct, Denver-based Magellan Petroleum Corp., which used to trade as “MPET.”

Tellurian is developing the $12 billion Driftwood LNG project south of Lake Charles, Louisiana as part of the next wave of LNG export projects. The goal is to bring it online in 2022 with the expectation that global demand growth by then will have wiped away the anticipated glut of LNG in the coming years.

Souki, Tellurian’s chairman, previously poached Cheniere executive Meg Gentle to serve as Tellurian’s president and chief executive.

Gentle said Friday that Tellurian’s next milestone will be filing its permit application for Driftwood LNG with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

As part of Magellan merger, Gentle named former Magellan CEO Antoine Lafargue as the new Tellurian chief financial officer.

Tellurian added some financial firepower in December when Paris-based Total agreed to buy a 23 percent stake in the new Houston LNG company for $207 million. In November, General Electric’s oil and gas division, which is combining with Houston-based Baker Hughes, agreed to buy a much smaller stake in Tellurian for $25 million.